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What You Don’t Know CAN Kill You

By Just In Case Jack |
Last Updated: August 22, 2023

Best SHTF Communication Options…

SHTF Communications

Preparing for SHTF means greater than just stockpiling food.

It’s greater than just storing water.

It also includes SHTF communications.

Being in a position to send and receive critical news and knowledge about what’s happening.

Even when you are actually “at the hours of darkness,” it doesn’t mean your SHTF communications should be.

Keeping lines of communication open with others within the worst of times is a vital prepper responsibility.

However, there shouldn’t be only one single method for SHTF communications.  There are literally several options to think about.

Some are higher than others, so let’s start.

↓ A Budget-Friendly Tactical SHTF Comms Setup ↓

Cell Phone Survival Communications

Let’s Start With Cell Phones

Almost everybody today has a cellular phone that could make calls and send text messages.

And they’re the perfect option for limited event emergencies.

If you get in a automobile wreck, a cellular phone works quickly to call for help.

A cellular phone can notify medical professionals immediately if someone has a heart attack.

Yet, they are only concerning the worst option for anything larger in scope.

Anybody who has been in a mass disaster situation can attest to the frustration of attempting to make a cellular phone call.

They probably discovered that the network they’re so used to using is totally overloaded and jammed.

No outgoing calls, no incoming calls. Nothing.

Even at non-emergency events, comparable to popular at school football games, you’ll notice jammed cellular phone networks locally.

This is particularly true since nearly all college-aged adults are heavy users of cell phones and all these cellular phone network jam.

And with the proliferation of smartphones, these local network jam-ups will likely worsen and more frequent.

A network jam is a common problem and is the cellular phone’s Achilles heel.

Making it absolutely the worst communication option for SHTF.

Hell, even smoke signals will likely be more reliable than cell phones when SHTF.

↓ Getting emergency alters to cell phones is an imperfect system ↓

The one saving grace for cell phones is the text messaging option.

Try using text when a mass emergency occurs, and cell towers are jammed.

The use of text messaging has proven to be barely less affected by an emergency situation.

During Hurricane Katrina, text messaging (while not fast) did proceed to get through.

So hey, it’s value a shot.

And with cell phones in rural areas of our country, you’ve to take care of weak cellular phone signals.

Sure, you’ll be able to get a cellular phone signal booster, but those only work if there’s a signal to spice up – not a guarantee in a widespread emergency.

So never make a cellular phone your only survival communications option.

Walkie Talkie Radios

What about Hand Held Walkie Talkies?

Walkie-talkies, or GMRS/FRS radios, are great for short-range SHTF communications. They work best for a small individual group like your survival coalition.

They don’t work for mass communication or long-range communications.

It’s a really perfect option for a family wanting to remain involved as they move around a small property or local area.

Just remember depending on the model and manufacturer, you’ll get different ranges.

So make sure that you test their range before you wish them, so that you understand your walkie-talkies range limitations.

Most specified ranges are for flat open land areas.

Trees, hills, and buildings are likely to diminish the general range.

So remember this when you select walkie-talkies as your local SHTF communication device.

↓ High Power SHTF Walkie-Talkie ↓

HAM Radio

Are Ham Radios Good For SHTF?

Ham radio was one in all the most well-liked communication devices over large distances in the midst of the twentieth century.

However, as phone networks improved, the price of long-distance and international calls grew cheaper.

So the recognition of ham radio dwindled for the masses.

But, HAM survival radio is ideal for survival purposes.

Ham radio networks are each reliable and might communicate over long distances.

They are also not depending on cellular phone towers.

The only real drawbacks to ham radio are the equipment costs and the training essential to learn the way to use it.

↓ Mike Glover Talks Ham Radio and Preparedness ↓

You must get an official license when you intend to broadcast (and never just listen).

An operator must obtain a license to operate ham survival radio equipment legally.

This includes passing a test and paying a small fee.

↓ How to Easily Get Your HAM Radio License: a Beginner’s Guide ↓

However, a license shouldn’t be required to buy, own, and listen in.

Which is amazingly helpful in most survival SHTF communications scenarios.

And after SHTF, all these rules and regulations won’t matter anyway.

Plus, getting a small setup and a license is straightforward.

So don’t let it stop you from becoming a licensed operator.

Also, spend money on upgrading your ham radio’s antenna so that you would be able to transmit and receive signals over longer distances.

Getting intelligence reports from other States can prove very helpful when grid power is out nationwide as a result of an EMP attack.


Is CB Radio a Viable SHTF Communications Option?

Citizens Band radio was one of the vital popular ways of keeping involved with people within the Nineteen Seventies and 80s.

However, this kind of radio communication dropped in popularity within the late twentieth century.

CB Radio’s benefits include the greater range vs. walkie-talkies.

However, a CB radio is usually positioned in a single location inside a property.

Within a built-up area, using CB radio could possibly be affected by larger buildings and more interference.

Unlike ham radio operators, a CB operator doesn’t require a license or pass a test to take to the airwaves.

↓ Communications Options For Preppers: CB Radio ↓

Hand Crank Radio

Should I Invest in Listen-Only Devices?

One major problem when disaster strikes is the lack of power.

All the devices discussed up to now require electrical or battery power to operate.

So you’ll must work out your backup power system to operate these for longer periods of time when SHTF.

That’s why I suggest you spend money on a listen-only survival radio device.

Not only are they low price, but you can even get one with a hand crank to give you the chance to maintain it powered easily.

Just crank and listen. Simple.

↓ Hand Crank Radio Review – Eton Microlink ↓

These shortwave listen-only radios can provide a useful link to SHTF news.

It can assist keep you up to this point on the present situation for any major disaster.

Another listen-only option to think about is using a police scanner.

These assist you to obtain information that could possibly be life-saving during an SHTF event.

This is a novel option, as vital news will likely be broadcast over analog police frequencies.

But, many law organizations are moving to digital technologies.

So over time, this feature will turn out to be less effective.

Also, note that a scanner should be programmed upfront.

You want to make sure you are tuned into the correct channels to achieve the correct emergency news.

Action Plan

Your SHTF Communications Action Plan

You should make a plan for all 3: Listen-Only, Local, and Long Range.

These are the three communication levels you need to strive for in your SHTF communications.

This means a 3 pronged approach:

1. Listen Only

First, don’t you’re thinking that it’s beyond time to own not less than one small portable hand-crank survival radio?

Here’s the one I like to recommend.

It’s small and light-weight (so it’ll slot in your Bug Out Bag), plus it doesn’t require batteries.

Done? Good, you now have your electrical independent SHTF listen-only communication taken care of. Congrats!

2. Local Communication

The second is local communication.

If you’ve a neighborhood survival coalition (and you need to), then you definitely need every member to have a walkie-talkie.

Now your coalition just got 10 times stronger as you’ll be able to communicate so significantly better and faster when SHTF.

3. Long-Range Communication

Finally, you need to investigate owning and operating a ham radio.

Here’s  one to get you began and an internet site to learn more about getting a license.

For a real SHTF event, you’ll need to give you the chance to achieve out over longer distances to speak with other survivalists and preppers.

Good SHTF communications are a difference-maker in survival.

Listening and communicating locally and over long distances is vital to your long-term survival success.

Don’t underestimate this advantage, and don’t wait until it’s too late.

Prepare, Adapt & Overcome,

  • Cofounder Of Skilledsurvival.com & TheResilientLife.com
  • Born & Raised On A Rural Farm In The Midwest
  • Mechanical Engineering Grad From A Major University
  • Engineer With A Major Food Manufacturing Company
  • 10+ Years Researching, Writing, & Teaching Preparedness
  • Mission: Help Folks Stop Living A Life Fragile To The Future
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